Celebrating our 110th year of ministry in the year 2019 First United Methodist Church, Donna, Texas had the seeds of its beginnings in 1850 when Methodism was established in the Rio Grande Valley. When the Valley began its great commercial and agricultural development in 1906, life was full of hardships for those early Christian residents. The vision of these pioneers was remarkable as they realized the need for a Protestant Church, as Baptists, Presbyterians, Disciples of Christ and Methodist met together in various school houses or vacant buildings around the valley. As the population increased, Methodists erected small churches. For several years one Methodist pastor served the towns of Mission, McAllen, Edinburg and Donna. Many members of various denominations attended Methodist churches until they could build their own houses of worship.
First United Methodist Church was organized in 1909 with a clear purpose of love and devotion to Almighty God in the Wesleyan Tradition with Rev. C. W. Goodwyn serving as pastor of both the Donna and McAllen congregations of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. In 1918, the Rev. O. C. Crow was sent to Donna, and during his ministry the Methodist Church grew from twenty to a bustling congregation of several hundred. The small wood framed church soon became inadequate to accommodate the number of people it needed to serve, so worship and Sunday School was held in the Donna High School auditorium until an addition to the church could be built. Our present stone sanctuary building, erected in 1951, is adorned with stunning stained glass windows topped with a prominent steeple and contains spacious Sunday School rooms, a cozy Parlor, a multipurpose Fellowship Hall with a kitchen complex, spacious handicapped accessible rest rooms, a library and church offices.
First United Methodist Church stands as a beacon to the community as we offer God's love to all who would seek a haven from the rush of life and desire a purpose through Christian service. Yet we are more than just a church. We are a family. We come from many walks of life and many corners of the earth. In our church family, some of us are raising children, while others are enjoying the fruits of our toil through retirement, yet we are vitally active in God's service. Some of us travel North in the spring while looking forward to our return in the Fall. Some of us remain and continue God's ministry through the heat of the Summer, and yet we keep a candle burning in the window to guide those who will find their way back to their home South again. From whatever road that led us here, we rejoice with our Brothers and Sisters of faith as we unite together in Donna, Texas as the Body of Christ serving where we have been planted.